Jewish magic

editing_for_authors
Editing for authors: because every writer needs a good editor.

dragonjax

I write stuff and break boards.
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Mar 20, 2005
Messages
3,421
Reaction score
367
Age
50
Location
New Yawk
Website
www.jackiekessler.com
I'm working on a new project that has the main character discover one of the secret Names of the Almighty. Magic, mayhem, and miscommunication ensue. (And there's a romance, but then, I write paranormal romance.)

While I'm not planning on delving into the Kabalah or the Zohar (I haven't studied either), the main antagonist is very learned in these areas. Are there any very basic works on the Kabalah (the original Jewish version, not the recently popular celebrity Kabalaish version) or the Zohar that anyone could recommend for research purposes?

(With the main character, once she has the Name, she winds up doing things accidentally -- creating a golem that looks and acts like her ex-boyfriend, for example, and curing the sick. But she has to remain chaste for her to channel this power -- which does nothing for her love life...)

Many thanks!
 

PattiTheWicked

Unleashing Hell.
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Feb 15, 2005
Messages
3,999
Reaction score
1,247
Website
www.pattiwigington.com
I'm not Jewish, but a few years ago I had the pleasure of meeting a fascinating gentleman on a witchcraft message board. This fellow was in his eighties, a Holocaust survivor, and a rabbi. He began posting on this particular board in an effort to learn some new things about other people's beliefs -- fortunately, he was a wonderful guy who also shared a lot of information about his own faith, particularly in regards to magic and the occult. I'll share with you some info he passed along to me -- these are from my conversations with him and I should note that I *do not* have much first hand information about these sources.

There are any number of documents pertaining to Jewish magic, not the least of them being Kabbalah related. Check out some of the documents within the Dead Sea Scrolls (which the dear rabbi actually had the privilege of working on translations many years ago), they are an excellent source of info -- 4Q186 (an astrological text which bears resemblance to some medieval documents in Hebrew); 4QMess ar ( beleived to be part of the "lost book of Noah"; and 4Q511-12 ("Songs of the Sage," which protect the singer from demons).

Around the seventh century, there were Jewish incantation bowls, which were basically a bowl inscribed with an incantation, often having to do with demonology. Amulets have been unearthed from around that time, usually with text in Aramaic inscribed on charms of various metals -- spells of protection, healing, etc.

There's also a Hebrew document called Baraita deMazzalot which discusses hellenistic astrology but with a Jewish theological perspective.

Several magical texts are still in existence, including Sepher HaRazim (the Book of Mysteries), Harba deMosheh (the Sword of Moses), and Havdala deR. Akiva (The Havdalah of R. Akiva). I'm not sure if any of these are available in a workable English translation, but it might be worth looking for if you're really interested in magic.

You might also want to look at some of the books in this bibliography: Biblio - Hebrew Mysticism
 

smiley10000

What do we do? We write...
Super Member
Registered
Joined
May 18, 2006
Messages
418
Reaction score
92
Location
east of here and west of there
Creating a Golem is not a simple thing that could be done 'accidently'.
You also should be careful, your golem subplot sounds identical to the X-files one.

The Jewish faith does not believe you must be 'chaste' to be holy (of course relations are only condoned-and encouraged-within the confines of marriage). There was only one prophet that had to seperate from their spouse and that was Moses.

A name of G-d cannot do anything unless it is properly used with kavannah (intent). You could say the name of G-d again and again and nothing will happen. Therefore, I don't know if your premise is so likely (of course that didn't stop the X-files from creating a golem).

Try and find an introductory book on Jewish Mysticism in a Judaica store, it may give you an idea of the scope of information out there. PM me if you need help finding one in your area.

Good luck!
:) 10000
 

TeddyG

The Other Shoe Will Fall!
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Oct 10, 2005
Messages
2,689
Reaction score
549
Location
Jerusalem, Israel
Website
www.virginisrael.com
Wow .. what a mishkabobble!!!!!!

Okay one thing at a time:
Easy to hard

1. Smiley is correct and not correct. The equivalent of "chastity" in terms of nuns and monks does not exist in Judaism. Nor does it exist in law. However, Smiley has forgotten (I am sure from excitement at answering) that the High Priest on Yom Kippur does sep. from his wife. ALSO, on Yom Kippur, on 9th of Av, and during Mourning, the husband and wife DO separate - as also they must during the time of Niddah (ritual purity and impurity). So be careful here. It is not as simple as it first sounds.

2. Let us move on to the Zohar. There is a small excellent book written by Gershon Sholem (the world reknowned prof. who actually opened the Zohar to modern scientific study at Hebrew Univ. called "Zohar" you may want to take a look at that). There are a few other very good books but it depends on the extent that you want to get to.

3. As to the mentions of Mechilta's etc. This cannot be done without a long discourse on 1) Midrash and Midrashic Literature 2) Agaddah and Aggadic Literature - and the diff. between 1 and 2 AND a knowledge and understanding of what is "late" and what is "early" in this literature. This is critical - CRITICAL - to know what sources were influenced by the onset of Christianity and what were not.

4. The Name of God - Okay this is not only a "mystical" discussion but certainly a difficult one for the uninitiated into Talmudic and Midrashic Literature. So for the sake of simplicity.

There are supposedly 72 names to God. The "secret ones" or actually the secret one that you seem to referring to is the one handed down in secret from High Priest to High Priest (Raiders of the Lost Ark kind of name). This secret name of God is also mentioned in the Talmud specifically in the Tractate Sanhedrin. Keep in mind that it is not known and certainly the King is supposed to possess this name as well - but that is NOT a discussion for this post.

5. Golem - The Golem idea became famous with the MaHaral from Prague as he created one to help the Jews against the blood libels that were being waged against the Jews. The Golem though is not a new invention and it is not just a creation of some big doll and then sticking the true name of God inside. As Smiley mentioned there is an idea of "intent" here..HOWEVER intent is ONLY ONE facet.

All this is a just a quickie intro.
I would suggest for a WIP that if you are really into this stuff you are going to have to do a lot of research. If you just need it for a WIP and not detailed..stick to the chapter headings. After all it is just fiction.
 

TeddyG

The Other Shoe Will Fall!
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Oct 10, 2005
Messages
2,689
Reaction score
549
Location
Jerusalem, Israel
Website
www.virginisrael.com
PattiTheWicked said:
There are any number of documents pertaining to Jewish magic, not the least of them being Kabbalah related. Check out some of the documents within the Dead Sea Scrolls (which the dear rabbi actually had the privilege of working on translations many years ago), they are an excellent source of info -- 4Q186 (an astrological text which bears resemblance to some medieval documents in Hebrew); 4QMess ar ( beleived to be part of the "lost book of Noah"; and 4Q511-12 ("Songs of the Sage," which protect the singer from demons).

Around the seventh century, there were Jewish incantation bowls, which were basically a bowl inscribed with an incantation, often having to do with demonology. Amulets have been unearthed from around that time, usually with text in Aramaic inscribed on charms of various metals -- spells of protection, healing, etc.

There's also a Hebrew document called Baraita deMazzalot which discusses hellenistic astrology but with a Jewish theological perspective.

Several magical texts are still in existence, including Sepher HaRazim (the Book of Mysteries), Harba deMosheh (the Sword of Moses), and Havdala deR. Akiva (The Havdalah of R. Akiva). I'm not sure if any of these are available in a workable English translation, but it might be worth looking for if you're really interested in magic.

Okay not to step on Patti's knowledge which is extensive YOU MUST BE VERY CAREFUL HERE...

1 The Dead Sea Scrolls are NOT totally untouched by other sources. They are the oldest BUT the Essenes who created them or wrote them - are the subjects of long debates. They were certainly only ONE specific SMALL sect during and/or after the 2nd Temple Era. (And may have been the sect where John the Baptist originated from). As to the demons, imps, angels etc. - If you need specific information on this - it is going to be long and complicated and must cover a lot of ground. For sure there is a great deal of this in Jewish legend, and indeed much of it is very early sources, BUT it is not something that should be approached with a basic modicum of understanding of the creation sequence - Maaseh Bereshit - in Jewish philosophical terms.

2. Sefer HaRazim etc. - way out of depth here for a normative AW post and certainly the first book is NOT magic. Indeed I have no clue what the sefer of Havdalah of Rabbi Akiva is .. nor did I ever hear of it (which is strange). I would be very suspicious about such a book, and VERY VERY suspicious about any work that proports to mention Magic in a Jewish context. For OT reasons those terms are not exactly possible in one statement. Magic and Judaism are usually VERY LATE inventions. Remember even the Golem for Judaism is NOT considered magic by any means.

I must point out, for the sake of intellectual honesty here, that MANY of these works are VERY LATE in being written, and have large influences of Christian and Isalmic society. One must be incredibly careful here.

Also I should add to my previous post, that you will find in the Zohar and other such works a very strong underlying sexual current in many of its descriptions.
 

TeddyG

The Other Shoe Will Fall!
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Oct 10, 2005
Messages
2,689
Reaction score
549
Location
Jerusalem, Israel
Website
www.virginisrael.com
Thus the final post leads me to simply state that if you are looking for "purity" in sources and want the REAL THING...
the title of your thead is a contradiction in terms actually.
In all pure approaches - there is NO SUCH THING as Jewish + Magic.
Magic is a very late term and thus implies a great deal of outside influence.
It is rather the way Judaism sees the creation of the world, the method in which the world continues as well as the way God interacts with the world.
This is NOT magic. It is the ability to harness the forces that we do not see nor hear - though they exist.
 

TeddyG

The Other Shoe Will Fall!
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Oct 10, 2005
Messages
2,689
Reaction score
549
Location
Jerusalem, Israel
Website
www.virginisrael.com
one small point as well
there is another thread at AW where the thread discusses some stuff about Kaballah and Sefirot and stuff..
When I first read it - for a Jew it was confusing as it uses the correct terms but with horribly WRONG definitions...actually ludicrous, from a Zohar-Mystical point of view..They were so off that I was at first aghast at how anyone could post such things posing as an expert.

When I called the thread poster on this it was claimed that this is a Kaballah and knowledge of sefirot that is not from Jewish tradition...(I still dont understand that but to each their own.)

I have absolutely no knowledge on such things not from Judiasm...but it is a great example of how ideas are taken, the same terms are used, and become totally divorced from their original meaning and intent. When I first read those posts, it was clear to me that the poster had no clue what the Sefirot are in Judaism. Same terms same overall intent - but not anything to do with Kaballah and Jewish mysticsm. Indeed if seen from a learned Jewish eye - they were not only wrong definition but terribly misleading.

So if you are looking for the "pure" or "original" idea in mystical Judaism then you must be careful with your sources. Otherwise just pick and choose what is good for a fiction WIP
 

dragonjax

I write stuff and break boards.
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Mar 20, 2005
Messages
3,421
Reaction score
367
Age
50
Location
New Yawk
Website
www.jackiekessler.com
Whew -- thanks so much, Teddy! Obviously, I've got my work cut out for me.

I want to keep it light; as you said, this will be fiction--a humorous paranormal romance, to be specific. But I also don't want to completely make up the mystical elements. I've got quite a lot of research--and thinking--to do.

Thanks again!
 

PattiTheWicked

Unleashing Hell.
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Feb 15, 2005
Messages
3,999
Reaction score
1,247
Website
www.pattiwigington.com
Teddy, this is fascinating stuff you've posted. I definitely see what you're saying as to the dilution of ideas. Would it be correct to say that there is, in Judaism, a prohibition against "magic" when the term is used to describe sorcery and witchcraft, but not against mysticism itself?
 

TeddyG

The Other Shoe Will Fall!
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Oct 10, 2005
Messages
2,689
Reaction score
549
Location
Jerusalem, Israel
Website
www.virginisrael.com
Patti:

the answer here is very complicated and incredibly contradictory as well.
1. First off - as the OT has very specific injunctions against "witchcraft" there are two thoughts on this. That it just does not exist and the OT wanted to warn against such use of belief in a system that would lead "to the wrong path" in the worship of God. The other thought is that it does exist and has power (as may be seen in King Saul visiting the necromancer and relying on the answer and being punished for it - as also may be seen in that Pharoah's helpers could repeat the first two plagues - Blood and Frogs). Thus since these powers are REAL the OT warned categorically against using them and turning them into part of another religion, and thus not worshipping God.
(It gets more complicated but that is the gist of it)

Magic is a late term and it implies things to the modern mind that are just not compatiable with Judaism. If you talk of "real" magic then again what was said above holds.

Mysticsm teaches us the powers INHERENT within our reality and what their purpose is. NOT so much how to harness them for our own use. How to influence them - YES but to harness them is a whole diff. ballgame and cup of tea.

The idea as proported in another thread here and on some idiotic sites on the web that one can with the proper knowledge channel the Sefirot is gobbdlygook and just ludicrous. An understanding of Sefirot, the Shechinah, the creation and God is something that Judaism does not usually "publish" in public. As the Mishnah states - The Age of forty for wisdom to learn the mystical parts of God. There is a reason for this.

The famous legend of "Four entered the orchad..and only one came out unharmed...for he entered in peace and left in peace" must be discussed in context with all this. This is NOT a simple subject, if one is looking for Jewish point of view - otherwise as I said, and as I have seen even at AW - make up whatever you wish. Then it is the realm of fiction.

These are long, serious, and complicated discussions certainly not able to be handled in even a series of posts.

Be all that as it may - as you may now understand the terminology of Magic is not exactly something that will be accepted within the context of Judaism. And this is not just a semantic thing. It is based upon an understanding of what "magic" is.
 

dragonjax

I write stuff and break boards.
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Mar 20, 2005
Messages
3,421
Reaction score
367
Age
50
Location
New Yawk
Website
www.jackiekessler.com
TeddyG said:
Mysticsm teaches us the powers INHERENT within our reality and what their purpose is. NOT so much how to harness them for our own use. How to influence them - YES but to harness them is a whole diff. ballgame and cup of tea.

So I should have said "Jewish mysticism" in the thread title. Could you explain a little more about the difference between influencing our own inate powers (which, I assume, one learns from studying the true sources [non Christian/Islam-influenced versions] or from a learned mentor) and harnessing these powers for our own use, which you say is something completely different? Is it that mysticism is a way of understanding the universe, God, and our place in it, and that we can--not shape things, but suggest certain paths/outcomes by voicing the right, um, wording? prayer? to God and/or the various angels/archangels? Is this even close to being sort of correct?

TeddyG said:
Also I should add to my previous post, that you will find in the Zohar and other such works a very strong underlying sexual current in many of its descriptions.
Could you get into a touch more detail here? As I mentioned, my work is paranormal romance, so if there's a sexual connection between mysticism and sex, this is a HUGE neon sign for me. Instead of the idea of the main character having to be chaste, perhaps I should consider doing the exact opposite: that for her to influence the...energy? source? Name?...she innately can touch but doesn't understand, she needs to have sex?

(Apologies if the above offends.)
 

TeddyG

The Other Shoe Will Fall!
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Oct 10, 2005
Messages
2,689
Reaction score
549
Location
Jerusalem, Israel
Website
www.virginisrael.com
dragonjax said:
So I should have said "Jewish mysticism" in the thread title. Could you explain a little more about the difference between influencing our own inate powers (which, I assume, one learns from studying the true sources [non Christian/Islam-influenced versions] or from a learned mentor) and harnessing these powers for our own use, which you say is something completely different? Is it that mysticism is a way of understanding the universe, God, and our place in it, and that we can--not shape things, but suggest certain paths/outcomes by voicing the right, um, wording? prayer? to God and/or the various angels/archangels? Is this even close to being sort of correct?
Jackie:

First of all NOTHING OFFENDS. What I do get pissed at (especially being a former NYer like you) is when others portend or place themselves as experts in areas they have not a clue what they are talking about. That grates on the need for some intellectual honesty. But nothing really offends me.

You hit almost a bingo in the above statement. It is VERY true and it is VERY false. Dichotomy. Conflict. (important word that is - CONFLICT)
J. mystical teachings ideas etc. sees the world on many different plains of existence. There is the REAL world the hear and now - past present and future - which is dealt with in a series of laws derived from the OT. This is the world that ONE MUST concentrate upon and on.

There are other plains of existence though. That of Heaven and Hell, that of angels and demons. And that of the idea of God.

I do NOT want to get too complicated. But I will try to explain in short. The first and most foremost question of the Kabalah, is this:

If God is all over and as the Talmudic statement says 'God is the place for the world and the world is NOT the place for God' meaning that the world (universe) exists within God's mind and creation and not that the Universe is home for God - then how did the universe come into existence? It is a theological-philosophical equivalent of the scientific question.

If God is all over and God is God then everything should be God. So the Kabalah came up with its first and most famous statement of "zimzum" which for lack of any better term would mean Implosion. God made space for the Universe to come into being. (This is about as much as I am willing to go for now in the discussion of Creation ideas with mystical ideas.) Thus with this ZimZum the Kabalah and so to Judiasm had to come to grips with the creation of good and evil. For evil is impossible in the mind of God who is all good. (I hope you are following).

This is NOT just a theological question on the existence of evil to the Kabalah. This is a CREATION question - one which must be understood to come to grips with the way God created and let the world run.

It is the belief of Judiasm that man has all the power to shape things. This is also an age old problem in Judaism which Maimonides was fascinated with. The exsistence of foreknowledge on the part of God (God has no past present future) and thus God knows all that was all that is and all the will be, and yet the insistence in Judaism that man has free will. Total and complete FREE WILL.

All these I bring to your attention for they demand thought. They are just chapter headings, if you will.

Thus a whole series of creations - not just the world but the various heavens and hells as well as the various spheres of influences that are needed or desired or must be tapped into to reach "divine" thought. (The Sefirot - very much misunderstood especially here at AW).

None of this can be divorced from the other. None of this can be taken as just one part and thus one may say...okay if I get the sefirot right, then I can influence an angel or demon etc. and I can get the right numbers for the Lotto. Just does not happen that way.

Okay move on further.....Angels are part of all this. But we do NOT pray to angels. One who is emmeshed within Kaballah may call upon an Angel to intercede in Heaven for him or others (many Hassidic legends are based upon this) BUT there is NO praying to an angel as an independent source separate of God. Any Talmudic story that even leans towards defining itself as such is immediately reitereated, explained and discussed.

Prayer to God is also a very deep ingrained notion in Judaism. We pray 3 times a day. Our lives revolve around it. The question as to what prayer should or may accomplish is complicated as well. (A great deal of my published short stories are about this very subject in literary fiction.)

This is all disjointed. But trust me on this, Jackie, there is logic in what little I have written. The fact is that this is a long and deeply involved subject which would demand of you an incredible amount of background information.

(MY WIP - The Chronicles of the Children of Heaven is based on a lot on the angels and demons and the seven heavens and hells.)
 

TeddyG

The Other Shoe Will Fall!
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Oct 10, 2005
Messages
2,689
Reaction score
549
Location
Jerusalem, Israel
Website
www.virginisrael.com
dragonjax said:
Could you get into a touch more detail here? As I mentioned, my work is paranormal romance, so if there's a sexual connection between mysticism and sex, this is a HUGE neon sign for me. Instead of the idea of the main character having to be chaste, perhaps I should consider doing the exact opposite: that for her to influence the...energy? source? Name?...she innately can touch but doesn't understand, she needs to have sex?

Again a bit of chapter headings.
Judaism looks upon sex as a "holy" act - for it is the act of procreation. The act that we as humans have to imitate God in "creation". Albeit this is creation of something from something (Yesh Me'Yesh) and not creation of something from nothing (the original creation sequence of God called Yesh Me'Ayin)

There is nothing "dirty" or "evil" about the sexual act in Judaism. It does not emenate from an "original sin" it does not force uncleanliness.

A great deal more must be said here but that is a chapter heading,.

The Mystical connotations prevelant in the Zohar and some other works present many sexual connotations - for the act of sex is an act of "completion" in many ways.

Chastity (edit: meaning Life long chastity) is not a Jewish concept that is lauded or praised. Indeed it is looked down upon in all ways. However, the sexual act to be "kadosh" - "holy" must be acheived in certain ways with certain pre-conditions. Adultery is a sin. Sex by those not married is in most conditions not looked upon in a positive manner. Sex by Jewish people during the wife's period is prohibited. And on and on and on. In other words the act of sexual contact and gratification does have its own set of rules and innate powers.

If you want more on this it will get graphic :D - and of course you can come to the HOL to see more!

But that is somewhat of an intro.
 
Last edited:

smiley10000

What do we do? We write...
Super Member
Registered
Joined
May 18, 2006
Messages
418
Reaction score
92
Location
east of here and west of there
Sorry if I was unclear in my post before. I did not think the details of the family purity laws were pertinant to the discussion. As Jackie was asking specifically about the need to be chaste to do holy things. Although there may be times in a relationship of a man and woman where they must be seperate this is in no way a permanent seperation.

Just to add to Teddy's excellent post above. The relationship between G-d and the Jewish people is compared to the relationship of a husband and wife. This means many of the mystical sources and Jewish teachings discuss the relationship of a husband and wife to explain how a Jew should relate to G-d. Song of Songs is a good example of this.

good luck,
:) 10000
 

dragonjax

I write stuff and break boards.
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Mar 20, 2005
Messages
3,421
Reaction score
367
Age
50
Location
New Yawk
Website
www.jackiekessler.com
Teddy, this is fascinating. I thought that Jews don't believe in hell, but rather in layers of Heaven. (I could swear I remember being taught something like this in Hebrew School. Er, along with angels having only one leg, and people feeding each other in Heaven with forks attached to their wrists--they have to feed the people across from them, because they can't bend their elbows...Maybe I'm completely misremembering...)

You've given me a lot to ponder. THANK YOU.

I would like to touch a bit more on the sexual current in mysticism -- what is the HOL? And maybe this should go offline, if it's going to get graphic? Could you PM me -- or email me at

d r a g o n j a x AT m a c DOT c o m

Thanks again.
 

dragonjax

I write stuff and break boards.
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Mar 20, 2005
Messages
3,421
Reaction score
367
Age
50
Location
New Yawk
Website
www.jackiekessler.com
ZimZum: Implosion. Am I correct in saying that God created within Himself the universe--part of Himself, yet removed; connected, yet independent?

Maybe sort of like a pregnant woman, with a maturing fetus in her womb? Well, maybe not; the fetus is completely dependent on the mother for life. But the fetus exists independently -- if connected. Is this analogy in the right ballpark?

Or is it more like the universe is like the underwater city of Atlantis--encased in a life-supporting bubble--and the waters around it is like God?
 

Popeyesays

Now departed. Rest in peace, Scott, from all of us
Requiescat In Pace
Registered
Joined
Apr 20, 2006
Messages
1,461
Reaction score
163
I think the popular notion that Judaism ande magick go together is quite old. At least as old as the Moorish occupation of Spain. There the great Judaic philosophers were treated well and allowed to delve deeply into mysticism, sciences and 'politics'.

To the Christian mind of the time, the Moors and Muslims in general were leagued with the devil, therefore there was no question in the minds of the unenlightened that they must be sorcerors as well. Since the Jewish philosophers were so key in the sciences they must have been sorcerors as well.

When Ferdinand kicked the last of the Moorish princes out of Spain around 1490, the inquisition was formed to ferret out those Moroscoes and Jews who refused to give up Judaism even while ostensibly converted to the Roman Church. The inquisition started with the assumption that those individuals were sorcerors, popularized it, and the Jews of Europe have been saddled with it ever since.

It became so inherent, I believe, that Judaic mysticism had to go largely underground to avoid added persecution to the Jewish community at large. We still see evidence of the saturation of all European culture leads to stories like "The Golem".

Regards,
Scott
 

TeddyG

The Other Shoe Will Fall!
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Oct 10, 2005
Messages
2,689
Reaction score
549
Location
Jerusalem, Israel
Website
www.virginisrael.com
dragonjax said:
Teddy, this is fascinating. I thought that Jews don't believe in hell, but rather in layers of Heaven. (I could swear I remember being taught something like this in Hebrew School. Er, along with angels having only one leg, and people feeding each other in Heaven with forks attached to their wrists--they have to feed the people across from them, because they can't bend their elbows...Maybe I'm completely misremembering...)

One thing at a time. Discussions of what angels look like is really dependant upon the source. For instance the Talmud in Tractate Chagigah 14b and onwards discusses some angelic looks. So to in the tractate Sanhedrin and elsewhere. BUT there is also a wealth of information in Midrash and Aggadata.

Yes we have hell. (Look at the Tractate Chagigah above and many other Talmudic references.) We also have the Angel of Death and Satan who may or may not be 2 diff. entities.

(Hebrew school may not have been specific :) )

I have NO clue where that mishkabobble of forks etc comes from. Sounds like something grandma made up in the shtetel to ward off the evil eye.
 

TeddyG

The Other Shoe Will Fall!
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Oct 10, 2005
Messages
2,689
Reaction score
549
Location
Jerusalem, Israel
Website
www.virginisrael.com
dragonjax said:
ZimZum: Implosion. Am I correct in saying that God created within Himself the universe--part of Himself, yet removed; connected, yet independent?

Maybe sort of like a pregnant woman, with a maturing fetus in her womb? Well, maybe not; the fetus is completely dependent on the mother for life. But the fetus exists independently -- if connected. Is this analogy in the right ballpark?

Without knowing it you hit a triple with the above analogy. The pregnant woman with the fetus is often used as an analogy here. But it is also used in explaining the nature of Messiah in Judaism as well.

I hesitate to get into zimzum. Part of my Yeshiva upbringing, part of my long years spent in Yeshiva, and part of my natural reticence to discuss such things where every word is looked at differently by many diff. readers. so for the time being let us leave it.
 

TeddyG

The Other Shoe Will Fall!
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Oct 10, 2005
Messages
2,689
Reaction score
549
Location
Jerusalem, Israel
Website
www.virginisrael.com
HOL is a thread here at AW..the House Of Love, where a great bunch of nuts hang out. However, it was just a joke! I tend to gravitate there when at AW. But rarely are we serious. So it was a joke.

As to the sexual content. Boy oh boy...my favorite subject!!!!!! :D
(Is all I will say!)
 

TeddyG

The Other Shoe Will Fall!
Super Member
Registered
Joined
Oct 10, 2005
Messages
2,689
Reaction score
549
Location
Jerusalem, Israel
Website
www.virginisrael.com
Popeyesays said:
I think the popular notion that Judaism ande magick go together is quite old.

Back to the black plague and before. Magic and Judaism though as I said, are not terms which can live peacefully together if we define magic with its common meaning
 

smiley10000

What do we do? We write...
Super Member
Registered
Joined
May 18, 2006
Messages
418
Reaction score
92
Location
east of here and west of there
dragonjax said:
Teddy, this is fascinating. I thought that Jews don't believe in hell, but rather in layers of Heaven. (I could swear I remember being taught something like this in Hebrew School. Er, along with angels having only one leg, and people feeding each other in Heaven with forks attached to their wrists--they have to feed the people across from them, because they can't bend their elbows...Maybe I'm completely misremembering...)

Your hebrew school sounds like it was far more interesting than mine! All we learned about was what you did to a slave that didn't want to be set free in the seventh year...

Angels are said to have one leg, this is why we say the Shemoneh Esreh with our feet together-to stand like angels. Now what this means :Shrug: no clue, I have never learned the Gemorah...

There is a concept of Hell although it is rather different than the Christian one. I think (Teddy you may be able to confirm) that most sources say the max period a neshama can stay in Gehennom is nine months. It is a cleansing process to prepare the soul for Heaven. Heaven does have levels, so to speak, the reason a person says Kaddish for a year after a family member dies is for Aliyah Neshama (A raising of the Soul).

I too have never heard of forks attached to wrists and people feeding each other, but, meh, sounds kinda neat.

Happy researching!
:) 10000
 

Hanukkah sameach!

blue background happy hanukkah with menorah